Page last updated at 14:57 GMT, Monday, 5 October 2009 15:57 UK

At-a-glance: Tory conference


The "big, bold" plan to reform the UK's welfare system is scheduled to take centre stage as the Conservative conference gets under way in Manchester, but there are continuing questions about what David Cameron would do referendum-wise if the Lisbon Treaty was ratified and came into force before the next election...


Ready for change:
Policy review chairman Oliver Letwin
Shadow Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude
Mayor of London Boris Johnson

Reforming Politics - Accountability and Transparency:
Shadow Commons leader Sir George Young
Scottish Conservative leader Annabel Goldie
Shadow foreign secretary William Hague

Reforming Politics - Decentralisation and Social Action:
Shadow communities secretary Caroline Spelman
Shadow minister for community cohesion Sayeeda Warsi

The NHS:
Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley


There is likely to be no shortage of Brown-bashing at this week's gathering. However, on day one of the conference, Harriet Harman has proved the Tories' number one target. Sir George Young chastised her for omitting Lady Thatcher from a government document celebrating "women in power". And Boris Johnson made a non-too veiled reference to news that Labour's deputy had spoken to police over allegations she left the scene of a minor car crash. The London mayor told party members: "Once again it is up to us to sweep up the crushed indicator lights of a classic Labour car crash."


Another gem from the colourful mayor of London, who has been known to make the odd gaffe - having already made apologies to Liverpool, Portsmouth, Papua New Guinea and TV chef Jamie Oliver. He opened his speech by saying how pleased he was to be in Manchester "one of the few great British cities I have yet to insult".


If the Tories were serious about curbing 24 hour drinking, they would close down the conference hotel bars at 11pm to set an example, libertarian campaigner Shane Frith told a fringe meeting, accusing the party of "hypocrisy" on the issue. No sign of a groundswell of support for that idea so far....


David Cameron said a "big, bold" welfare shake-up would be at the heart of the Tory conference in Manchester aimed at "getting Britain working". Tories unveil welfare shake-up

Leader David Cameron played down suggestions of a rift with mayor of London Broris Johnson over Conservative policy towards an EU Treaty referendum. No rift over referendum - Cameron

The Conservative Party chairman Eric Pickles opened its conference in Manchester by warning activists "the general election is not in the bag". Pickles - Win not in the bag

The digital democracy innovator who built the No 10 petitions website has been signed up to advise the Conservatives on how they can make government more open and efficient. Internet guru hired by Conservatives

Former cabinet minister Lord (Ken) Baker told the conference the Conservatives are promising a new type of "technical school" in 12 cities across England if they are elected. These secondary schools, funded from the Academy budget, would be dedicated to engineering and science and would be linked to businesses and universities. Tories plan 'technical schools'

The Conservatives say they would create an extra 10,000 university places if elected funded by giving a 10% discount on student loan repayments to those who repaid ahead of schedule. Loan deal to fund student places

Shadow health secretary Andrew Lansley's speech to the conference on Monday says large sums of money could be saved and put back into front-line services by cutting back on NHS bureaucracy. Tories seek NHS bureaucracy cut

Tory Euro MP Daniel Hannan said David Cameron was "working privately to get a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty". The Tory leader has said he does not want to prejudice debate in countries who have yet to ratify the Treaty. Cameron 'working for Euro vote'

Conservative leader David Cameron said he was "desperately embarrassed" about the picture from his days in Oxford University's Bullingdon Club. He told the BBC's Andrew Marr Show "we do things when we're young that we deeply regret". Cameron regrets Bullingdon days

A "home protection scheme" to prevent older people having to sell their properties to fund long-term care was unveiled ahead of the conference by the Conservatives. In England, residential care costs must be met by the individual if they have assets of more than £23,000. Care home fees plan unveiled


William Hague ridicules Mandelson

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